Physics Major

Discoveries in physics have revolutionized the world. Physicists study the properties and behavior of matter and energy in a wide variety of contexts, ranging from the submicroscopic particles from which all ordinary matter is composed (particle physics) to the behavior of the universe as a whole (cosmology). As a physics major, you will use systemic reasoning and call on your imagination to understand the laws of nature, the structure of matter and the behavior of physical processes — the keys to many of the universe’s secrets.

The ability to put into practice what is learned in the classroom is paramount to your growth as a young scientist. The Department of Physics at Saint Joseph's has developed a strong research‐oriented culture. The award-winning faculty are distinguished researchers in the field whose primary focus is to provide you with an excellent, personalized education.

Your faculty mentor will challenge and guide you in the laboratory. You will learn to ask appropriate questions and design and perform experiments to answer them; analyze data using computational methods; draw conclusions and communicate the results clearly – all skills that transfer readily to many fields.

The five-year B.S./M.S. physics-education program is designed for students who wish to become certified secondary school (grades 7-12) science teachers. The program incorporates the four-year B.S. degree in physics with additional work during the summer and a fifth year to complete the M.S. in secondary education and to become certified. Given the numerous course requirements for the dual degrees and the certification, it is important that students talk with the physics education advisor about this program early in their careers to ensure they are taking appropriate courses. 

A bachelor’s of science in physics will open numerous options to you. Graduates go on to careers at competitive salaries in research and development, computer science, engineering and the biological sciences, or choose to enter top graduate, law or medical schools.